TOUCH (the sense of touch)
It was a cold day in October of 1966 in Parkersburg, West Virginia. I was 5 years old, the son of a prostitute and the brother to six older sisters. I awoke abruptly on this day astonished by the five girls who were looking down on me. “What happen “I said as I tried to get up? I looked at the girls who were hovering over me and with a bewilderment and sheepish tone I said “who are you”?
“We are your sisters” they said. Your just had a seizure. I got up feeling a little weak and instinctively went and set down by the fire. I didn’t know why, but for some reason I found comfort in staring into the flames.
Their bright red and yellow mixtures seem to allow me to drift into a state of bliss. When I would look away a feeling of confusion would come over me and fear would envelop my mind. I would stare back into the fire for relief.
My sisters and I lived with my grandmother; my mom was a prostitute and bad alcoholic, so it was necessary for her to take us in to her house. My oldest sister had left from what I was told and the six of us were left.
I had no clue what love was, it seemed as if my memory was erased from the convulsions I just experienced. Subconsciously I wanted someone to hold me, touch me, but no one would. Then he walked in, my uncle who lived behind us, I didn’t know who he was at the time, but fear seized me. He approached me and I cowered down as he picked me up and took me into the front room.
He set down in the rocking chair not saying a word, placing me on his lap. He held me tight and my fear increased. The room was dark and my grand mother was in the kitchen. He started to touch me around my groin area as we watched TV. After a while he let me go and I ran to the fire place again, my safe place.
Grandma came in and told us to get ready for bed, so my sisters and I went into the room that had three bunk beds and one queen size bed. I noticed that my sisters had a scared look on their faces, that’s when my older cousins came in the room-my uncle’s son’s- both teenagers. They said get in your beds and as we did they proceeded to touch my sisters sexually. I was curious and wanted to see what they were doing, so I slipped my head up the back side of the bed and the oldest cousin pushed the bed against me and started to choke me.
I felt like I was ready to pass out when he let go. I fell to the bottom bunk and began to cry. Instead of saying he was sorry he said “see what you get when you don’t mind your business”? Eventually we were put in foster homes because of the abuse. My first home wasn’t any better, the mother use to beat me and put me in the attic at night, because as a six year old I use to rock back a forth in my sleep. I can’t remember ever being hugged or shown affection from these people.
I thought may be I’m a bad kid and no body wants to love me. My next home was an older couple. Very nice people- church going folks. They played with me and at times they would punish me when I did wrong, but the difference was I could tell they loved me.
You see I needed to be touched: not physically, but emotionally, I needed someone to tell me that they loved me and show it by their actions. Jesus did that to me when I was sixteen. He touched me with his presence, but also showed me how much he loved me by dying on the cross of Calvary
In the book of Psalms 27:10 it says “though my Father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me.” You see even when our own relatives forsake us Jesus will take us by the hand and tell us we are loved by him.
Dear friend won’t you come to Christ with all your hurt, he loves you.
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